Inaugural Alan Owen Lecture
Professor Alan Owen
Campaigner For Better Health Care - A Life Devoted to Better Outcomes for Patients
Speaker: Professor Neville Owen, Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute
Presentation: Healthy Ageing in Australia—Environment, Lifestyle, Human Biology and Emerging Preventive Opportunities
22nd November 2013
Innovation Campus, Wollongong University
About the Speaker—Professor Neville Owen
Neville is a National Health and Medical Research Council Senior Principal Research Fellow, an Honorary Professorial Fellow in the Melbourne School of Population Health at the University of Melbourne and in the School of Population Health at the University of Queensland; he is also an Adjunct Professor in the Central Clinical School at Monash University. Prior to his most-recent move to Melbourne he was Director of the Cancer Prevention Research Centre at the University of Queensland; Professor of Health Psychology and Exercise Science and Associate Dean in the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences at the University of Wollongong; and, Foundation Professor of Human Movement Science at Deakin University.
Much of the escalating burden of chronic disease in our ageing Australian population can be linked to physical inactivity and weight gain. Musculoskeletal disorders, depression, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and breast and colon cancer have multiple adverse (and potentially avoidable) consequences for individuals, families, the workplace and the health system. Broad-reaching preventive health approaches, informed by relevant research evidence, are needed. Studies in Australia have begun to join some of the dots linking environments, lifestyle and biology with the development of major chronic diseases. This is through a better understanding of the built-environment, social and economic factors that can influence the normal habits and choices of everyday life. We can take heart from having made internationally-leading progress in tobacco control over the past 40 years. The next big population-health challenges are to build the bases for comparable progress in relation to physical inactivity and the food supply. This lecture deals with emerging evidence, issues and implications for disease prevention and health promotion in the Australian population.
Photo courtesy of Nick Rowley